The AL-East leading Baltimore Orioles fortified their bullpen Thursday, obtaining Andrew Miller from the Boston Red Sox for minor league pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez.
Miller provides the Orioles another solid left-hander in a bullpen that has flourished this season, led by Darren O’Day (3-1, 1.10 ERA) and lefty Zach Britton (3-2, 1.65 ERA, 21 saves).
“Just another good piece,” manager Buck Showalter said. “Gives us more depth down there.”
The 29-year-old Miller has a 2.34 ERA in 50 appearances with the last-place Red Sox, who unloaded several of their veterans Thursday before the end of the non-waiver trade deadline.
“He’s going to help us out late in the game,” O’Day said. “We have a lot of talented guys out there (in the bullpen). Having another one is only going to help us.”
Miller has limited left-handed hitters to a .150 batting average and kept righties to a .180 average in 150 plate appearances. He was expected to be in uniform for Baltimore on Friday against Seattle.
“I think he’s a little more than just a left-handed arm,” Showalter said.
Since becoming a full-time reliever in 2012, Miller has a 2.78 ERA in 140 games while averaging 13.3 strikeouts per nine innings. His contract expires after this season, so there’s a chance he won’t be with the Orioles beyond this year.
“We know Andy Miller is going to be a free agent,” Showalter said. “We think he can impact our ability to make the playoffs. We’re willing to take that risk.”
The 21-year-old Rodriguez is 3-7 with a 4.79 ERA in 16 starts with Double-A Bowie this year.
“I’m not excited about losing Eduardo, but you’ve got to give up quality to get quality,” Showalter said. “It’s a tribute to our farm system that we could sign and develop someone that brought Andrew.”
Although Miller isn’t necessarily a huge name, he comes to the Orioles on a day their division opponents lost star pitchers Jon Lester (Boston to Oakland), John Lackey (Boston to St. Louis) and David Price (Tampa Bay to Detroit).
“I’m hoping we play well enough to see them again,” Showalter said.